Is corruption an issue that is regularly raised in your jurisdiction? What standard do local courts apply for proving of corruption?

International Arbitration (3rd edition)

Egypt Small Flag Egypt

While there is corruption at various levels of government, the issue is rarely raised outside of criminal proceedings. A high evidentiary threshold is applied by the courts in order to prove corruption.

Cyprus Small Flag Cyprus

Corruption is not an issue in our jurisdiction.

Czech Republic Small Flag Czech Republic

Fortunately, in the recent past, corruption within the judiciary is not a hot topic.

In general corruption falls under the scope of criminal law and is therefore tackled by measures regulated by the Czech Code of Criminal Procedure.

Romania Small Flag Romania

Corruption is not an issue regularly raised in arbitration proceedings in Romania, such issues generally falling under the jurisdiction of the national courts.

Serbia Small Flag Serbia

An initiative for amendment of the Arbitration act was brought forward on January 17, 2018 in an official report by the Anti-corruption council, a state body formed by the Government of the Republic of Serbia monitoring the corruption level and advising on measures of improvement in that field.

The said report focuses on the need for transparency in relation to the process of appointing of an arbitrator i.e. naming the arbitrator by a party in cases when a party to the arbitration is the state itself or a public entity in control of the assets in which the state has property interest.

The said report is of an advisory nature; it creates no obligation on the part of the Government to act upon it and no action was taken in this regard.

China Small Flag China

No. Corruption is not an issue that is regularly raised in China.

Denmark Small Flag Denmark

a. In general corruption is not considered an issue in civil or commercial disputes. Thus, no specific standard for proving corruption has been developed. In general, Danish courts are very reluctant to decide on the subject matter in civil or commercial cases where corruption is involved, and such cases will often be rejected from the ordinary courts.

Poland Small Flag Poland

There is no publicly available case law in this regard.

Switzerland Small Flag Switzerland

Switzerland has a strong and effective legal framework to combat corruption. On a scale from 0 (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean), Transparency International's Corruption Perceptions Index 2017, a recognized source for comparing worldwide corruption, ranks Switzerland 3rd with a score of 85 (the average score in Western Europe is 66). In particular, the provisions of the Swiss Criminal Code are pivotal elements of the fight against corruption. Arts. 322ter to 322novies of the Swiss Criminal Code prohibit active and passive bribery of public officials, including arbitrators, as well as active and passive bribery of private individuals which are prosecuted ex officio.

As regards the standard of proof, the determination of the facts of the case must be based on all available and admissible evidence and must be justifiable as well as objectively comprehensible. A defendant may only be convicted if the criminal court is convinced, beyond any reasonable doubt, that all conditions for criminal liability are met.

UAE Small Flag UAE

Corruption is not frequent alleged and even less frequently proven in the UAE.

Article 257 of Federal Law No. 3 of 1987 (i.e. the UAE Penal Code -which applies to both Federal and Free-zone jurisdictions), as amended in September 2016, provides for the imprisonment of those individuals named in the article which ‘issues a decision or expresses an opinion or submits a report or presents a case or proves an incident, in favour of a person or against him, contrary to the duty of fairness and unbiasedness…’.

The standard for proving corruption in the Courts, is the same high standard of proof, as with all criminal matters in this jurisdiction.

United Kingdom Small Flag United Kingdom

There are no statistics available to assess the frequency with which corruption or bribery allegations are made in an arbitration context. It is worth noting, however, that in Premium Nafta v Fili Shipping [2007] UKHL 40, the House of Lords held that unless the arbitration agreement specifically (as opposed to the main contract) can be shown to be induced by bribery, the arbitration agreement will remain valid.

Saudi Arabia Small Flag Saudi Arabia

The KSA seeks to eliminate corruption through the National Anti-Corruption Commission (Nazaha) which aims for a transparent governmental system by applying the Kingdom’s anti-corruption laws and regulations such as, the Anti-Money Laundering Law (2012), Anti-Concealment Law (2004) and Anti-Bribery Law (1992).

United States Small Flag United States

Comparative to other countries, corruption is not an issue that is regularly raised in the U.S. The U.S. ranks 16 out of 180 countries on Transparency International’s 2017 Corruption Perceptions Index (https://www.transparency.org/news/feature/corruption_perceptions_index_2017).

Corruption allegations that arise in the U.S. related to bribes of foreign officials can be prosecuted under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”), while allegations that arise in relation to domestic officials can be criminally prosecuted under domestic anti-bribery statutes.

An individual may face criminal charges for bribery of public officials and witnesses under U.S. domestic law. 18 U.S.C.A. § 201. The standard of proof applicable to criminal charges in the U.S. is “beyond a reasonable doubt,” which is a very high standard that requires there to be no reasonable doubt in the mind of a reasonable person that the criminal defendant is guilty. See In re Winship, 397 U.S. 358, 362 (1970).

Under the FCPA, criminal charges brought by the Department of Justice against an individual or corporation will also be subject to the beyond a reasonable doubt standard, while civil claims brought by the Securities Exchange Commission will be subject to the preponderance of the evidence standard, a lower standard that requires that a fact or event was more likely than not to have occurred. See, e.g., United States v. Kay, 513 F.3d 432 (5th Cir. 2007); Gordon K. Eng, The Burden of Proof in SEC Disciplinary Proceedings: Preponderance and Beyond, 49 Fordham L. Rev. 642, 645 (1981).

Austria Small Flag Austria

There is no reliable data on how often the issue of corruption is raised in arbitration proceedings in Austria. The standard of proof required to establish corruption is not different than the otherwise applicable standard of proof.

Nigeria Small Flag Nigeria

Allegation of corruption is not a common issue in arbitration in Nigeria. If and when such an allegation is raised, the courts demand proof beyond reasonable doubts.

Russia Small Flag Russia

Given that corruption constitutes a criminal offence, the courts normally require that it has to be established by a final verdict. Due to such standard, this issue is seldom raised in Russia as the ground for challenging an award or refusing its recognition and enforcement.

Ireland Small Flag Ireland

Corruption is not an issue which has, to our knowledge, ever arisen in civil proceedings in Ireland. Corruption, as opposed to misfeasance, is more likely to potentially arise in the form of a criminal offence in which case the burden of proof would be ‘beyond reasonable doubt’ and not the civil standard of ‘the balance of probabilities’.

Norway Small Flag Norway

The issue of corruption is not regularly raised in Norway. If such an issue was to be raised in the context of a civil claim, the local courts would apply the standard of balance of probability.

Germany Small Flag Germany

Corruption is not an issue/topic that is raised regularly. If raised by one of the parties, the standard of prove is no different than any other facts that are relevant to the subject matter of the alleged claim or defence.

Croatia Small Flag Croatia

The issue of corruption is not regularly raised in Croatia.

The Croatian national courts evaluate all the facts that the court and the parties consider important for proper adjudication.

Updated: November 14, 2018